Dhobi Khola translates from Nepali into English as ‘washing work river’ -- the place where the dhobi (clothes washer) washes clothes on the bank of the river. Rudramati is the ethnic Newar name of the river. The river originates from the Shivapuri Hills and flows south to the heart of Kathmandu and joins the Bagmati River at Buddhanagar. Upstream, it is so clean that one can drink directly from the river and so pure that people use it for religious activities. However, the downstream of the river becomes polluted from the discharge of raw sewage and solid waste dumping. Monuments, ghats and temples are degrading and natural species of flora and fauna have completely disappeared.
Selina Nakarmi obtained her master’s degree in Environmental Science in 2017. She has been an outstanding volunteer for awareness raising campaigns to keep the Bagmati and its tributaries clean, and assisted with the 2nd National River Summit for Nepal in March 2017. Selina lives near the Dhobi Khola River where she can mobilize and sensitize the community members throughout the year.